Amgen and Abgenix have been collaborating on developing two major cancer drug candidates, one of which, panitumumab, has been shown effective against colorectal cancer therapy in its Phase 3 clinical trials. If approved by the FDA (they will file for FDA approval next week), the drug, which is an epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitor, is expected to have billion dollar potentials. Amgen’s press release says that Amgen gains full ownership over panitumumab, as well as another cancer drug candidate, denosumab:
The acquisition of Abgenix provides Amgen with full ownership of one of its most important advanced pipeline products, panitumumab. Working closely with Abgenix under a co-development agreement that Amgen assumed as a result of its acquisition of Immunex Corporation in 2002, Amgen has led the development and commercialization strategy for panitumumab. The acquisition provides additional value to Amgen by eliminating a tiered royalty that Amgen would have paid to Abgenix on future sales of denosumab (formerly AMG 162), which was created using Abgenix’s XenoMouse(R) antibody technology.
Webcast of the conference call regarding the merger is available here.